Starting Tuesday, June 1, Belle Grove Plantation will resume offering Manor House tours daily. The property, including the Beverley B. Shoemaker Welcome Center (containing the Museum Shop and exhibits) is open Monday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., and Sunday, 1-5 p.m. Manor Hour tours are offered hourly and begin at :15 past the hour. Each tour is limited to ten guests and admission is sold on a first-come, first-served basis. Guests who are not fully vaccinated are required to wear a mask on the property.
This summer, Belle Grove is participating in the Blue Star Museum program, an initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, and the Department of Defense. The program provides free admission to currently serving U.S. military personnel and their families from May 15-September 6, 2021. Belle Grove is partnering with the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley (also a Blue Star Museum) to honor U.S. Navy master diver Carl Brashear in a free online program on Tuesday, June 22 at 7 p.m. The guest speaker will be Chief Warrant Officer 5 Phillip Brashear, who will discuss his father’s journey to become the first African American to graduate from the Diving & Salvage School and to become a master diver. The major motion picture Men of Honor was based on Carl Brashear’s life. Registration is at bellegrove.org/calendar/brashear.
Belle Grove will host many of its popular events this summer and fall. On Saturday, June 5, 8 a.m.-3 p.m. is GardenFest. Organized by the Northern Shenandoah Valley Master Gardeners Association, it will feature a plant sale, garden related vendors, rummage sale, expert gardening information, and activities for children. This is a free event and Belle Grove Manor House tours will be discounted to $5 for those 12-years and older that day.
Bluegrass in the Barn with Five of a Kind Bluegrass Band will be held at Belle Grove on Saturday, July 10, 5-8 p.m. Tickets are $30 and are on sale now at www.bellegrove.org and in the Museum Shop. It includes complimentary beer, wine, and non-alcoholic beverages and snacks. Shaffer’s BBQ food truck will have food for sale.
The Belle Grove Wine Fest (plus!) is scheduled for Saturday, August 28, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. The “plus!” refers to an expanded number of area wineries, cideries, meaderies, distilleries, and breweries that will be included this year. Gingerfunk Allstars and the Elizabeth Lawrence Band will provide live music all day. Belle Grove is actively seeking vendors for this event and for more information contact email@example.com.
Belle Grove will again be the site of the U.S. Border Collie Handlers National Sheepdog Finals Tuesday, October 5-Sunday, October 10, 2021. The top-ranking sheep dogs and their handlers will qualify for this event that will crown the North American champion. Tickets are on sale now at www.bellegrove.org and in the Museum Shop.
Executive Director Kristen Laise said, “We are grateful for the support Belle Grove has received during the pandemic, which allows us to safely and seamlessly resume our daily operations and special events. As our community reopens, we look forward to welcoming back our neighbors from near and far for great educational and social activities.”
About Belle Grove—Belle Grove Plantation is located off Route 11 at 336 Belle Grove Road just south of Middletown, Virginia 22645 and is conveniently located to I-81 (use exit 302) and I-66. Belle Grove Plantation is a non-profit historic house museum that is a National Trust for Historic Preservation historic site (www.savingplaces.org). Belle Grove is also one of the partners in Cedar Creek and Belle Grove National Historical Park (www.nps.gov/cebe). Guests are encouraged to check www.bellegrove.org or call 540-869-2028 for updates before planning a visit.
Samuels Public Library Hosts Unique Exhibition on Virginia’s Deaf Village History
Lantz Mills Deaf Village: Exploring a Century-Old Shared Signing Community.
The Samuels Public Library, in a significant cultural event, is showcasing the Lantz Mills Deaf Village exhibition from November 27 to December 30, 2023. This unique traveling exhibition, presented by the Library of Virginia with support from the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the Sorenson Foundation, delves into the intriguing history of a shared signing community in Shenandoah County, Virginia.
Lantz Mills, a village in Virginia that existed from 1740 to 1970, was a rare example of a community where hearing and deaf individuals communicated using a shared visual language. This phenomenon, known as a shared signing community, was not unique to Martha’s Vineyard but also thrived in Virginia’s Shenandoah County.
The exhibition, consisting of six panels, paints a vivid picture of life in Lantz Mills. It highlights prominent deaf villagers like the Hollar and Christian families, their involvement in local businesses, and even tales of romance within the community. An innovative feature of each panel is a QR code linking to an ASL interpretation of the text, making the exhibition accessible and educational.
The backbone of this exhibition is a booklet on Lantz Mills Deaf Village, authored by deaf historian Kathleen Brockway, a descendant of the village. This booklet, commissioned as part of Shenandoah County’s 250th anniversary, provides a comprehensive look at the village’s history.
Complementing the exhibition, the Samuels Public Library is also organizing an introductory session to American Sign Language on December 14th. This initiative underscores the library’s commitment to inclusivity and education, aligning with its long-standing service to the Front Royal and Warren County community since its inception in 1799.
The Lantz Mills Deaf Village exhibition is more than a historical showcase; it’s a celebration of diversity and communication in a unique community setting. It serves as a vital educational tool, offering insights into the rich tapestry of Virginia’s deaf culture. As visitors explore this exhibition, they gain knowledge about a particular community’s history and an understanding of the broader implications of communication and inclusivity in society.
The Blue Ridge Arts Council launches its ‘Deck the Halls’ Christmas Tree and Festive Decorations sale Thursday and Friday
Blue Ridge Arts Council’s annual “Deck the Halls” — now in place in downtown Front Royal for almost two decades — opens today, Thursday, November 30, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. and extends tomorrow, Friday Dec. 1, from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. at the BRAC headquarters, 305 East Main Street, several doors west up East Main from the Gazebo.
A variety of decorated Christmas trees, holiday wreaths, and other seasonal items will be on sale throughout the month. Proceeds support ongoing programs of the arts council. For the first two days, refreshments will be offered.
This year the “Deck the Halls” display features an in-place art exhibit of the work of former Warren Sentinel Editor Kevin Seabrooke, “Browntown and Beyond”, that opened at the BRAC center October 14, running through January 12, 2024.
This Week’s Showtimes at Royal Cinemas as of November 30th
Are you looking for the full movie-going experience without having to wait in the long lines that often accompany that experience? Then look no further because Royal Cinemas movie theatre is the answer. Get the whole gang together and enjoy a movie! Reserved seating in all auditoriums.
Here is a list of this week’s showtimes at Royal Cinemas as of Thursday, November 30:
Ticket prices are as follows:
- Adult: $10
- Child (under 12): $7
- Military: $8
- Student (college): $8
- Senior: $8
- Matinees, All Seating: $7
FREE “Christmas Classics” Movie “THE POLAR EXPRESS”
Friday 12/1 @ 7:30 and Saturday-Sunday @ 1:00
- “Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom”
Holiday Cheer on Screen: Royal Cinemas Gifts Free Christmas Classics to Front Royal
Community Gathers for Festive Films and Family Fun.
In a heartwarming gesture to spread holiday cheer, Royal Cinemas in Front Royal announces a delightful lineup of free Christmas movie screenings throughout December. Kicking off the festive season, the theater invites families to join in the joy of timeless classics and cherished animations, making this holiday season one to remember. Showtimes are at 1 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday in December.
A Journey Begins with ‘The Polar Express’
The magic begins on December 2nd and 3rd with “The Polar Express.” This beloved film, featuring the versatile Tom Hanks, promises a captivating adventure for all ages. To make the experience even more special, the first 35 children will receive a complimentary Kids Combo, ensuring a perfect movie outing. This event is made possible through the generous sponsorship of Tana Hoffman Realtor – Sager Real Estate and Jean’s Jewelers, exemplifying the community spirit that defines Front Royal.
Triple the Fun: A Trio of Holiday Favorites
Continuing the festivities, December 9th and 10th will feature a triple treat with “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” and “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” These timeless classics are sure to rekindle childhood memories and create new ones for the younger generation.
An Evening for Adults: ‘Gremlins’ and Socializing
Switching gears for a more adult-themed evening, December 12th offers a unique experience. The Chamber of Commerce hosts an After Hours event at On Cue Sports Bar at 5:30 pm and a screening of the cult classic “Gremlins” at 7:30 pm. This blend of networking and nostalgic cinema provides a perfect evening escape for the grown-ups in town.
Classic Cinema: ‘Christmas in Connecticut’ and ‘White Christmas’
The vintage charm of “Christmas in Connecticut” (1945) takes the stage on December 16th and 17th, followed by Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye in “White Christmas” (1954) on December 23rd and 24th. These films, showcasing Hollywood’s golden era, offer a cozy retreat into the past, wrapping up the free movie month with elegance and warmth.
Royal Cinemas’ initiative to offer free Christmas movies is more than just entertainment; it’s a celebration of community, nostalgia, and the joyous spirit of the holiday season. It reminds us of the simple pleasures that unite us, uniting families and friends in the cozy glow of the silver screen.
Samuels Public Library Adult Programming Events for December
You can find and register for all library events on our website, www.samuelslibrary.net.
The Library will be closed for Christmas on Monday, December 25th and Tuesday, December 26th.
General Education Development
Every Tuesday & Thursday from 10:00 AM to 12:30 PM
In person. Samuels Public Library is proud to host Laurel Ridge Community College’s General Education Development course. This course is completely free. Let this course be the stepping stone to your success. More information on registration dates and deadlines can be found on the LFCC website lfcc.edu/adult-education
Phoenix Project – Hope for New Beginnings
Third Tuesday of every month from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM
In person. Serving all members of the Front Royal/Warren County community who have experienced or are currently experiencing domestic violence or sexual assault, Phoenix Project Advocates are available to provide crisis intervention, supportive counseling, safety planning, information and education, and more. Our services are free & confidential & trauma-informed. Hope. Help. Healing.
Bad Romance – Holiday Edition
Saturday, December 9th from 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM
In person. Do you consider yourself a hopeless romantic? Are bad romances a guilty pleasure of yours? Then you should join us for a special in-person meeting for our romance genre discussion group! Bring that old romance paperback for a book swap, and look forward to a door prize, and potluck! Indulge us with your favorite romance books, movies, music or other media, and possibly discover a new treat in this awesome informal discussion! December’s discussion theme is Holiday.
Books & Beyond
Tuesday, December 12th from 6:00 PM to 7:45 PM
Hybrid, virtual and in person. Do you love books and sharing them as much as we do? Join us to delve into new worlds of conversation about new books at your community’s public library! To attend virtually, please register in advance to receive a zoom link close to the event date.
Wednesday, December 13th from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
In person. Interested in your family’s history? Already done extensive research and want to be able to share your findings? Join our genealogy club where both novices and experts alike can come together and talk about different genealogy topics.
Photographing Winter’s Beauty
Saturday, December 9th from 9:00 AM to 11:30 AM
Shenandoah River State Park
In person. Winter’s beauty is often a still, quiet solitude. While at the same time, the anticipation of the holidays warms our hearts. This session will explore how to capture both the mood of winter solitude and the joy of the holidays. We will review all of the skills from past sessions and depending on the weather… go out and capture winter in our beautiful park. All types of cameras from smartphones to professional cameras and levels of photographers are welcomed. Dress in layers and come ready to share some joy of the season. Note: State Park parking fee rules apply for attending this program. The Library has a limited number of LVA state park bags with passes. Availability is not guaranteed.
National Shelter Pets Day at Winchester Area SPCA
The Winchester Area SPCA will celebrate shelter pets on National Shelter Pets Day, which is on the first Thursday after Thanksgiving. This year, it takes place on November 30.
The day brings awareness to sheltered pets. Most people who have adopted a shelter pet can testify that shelters are full of great pets that provide companionship and unconditional love.
Stop by the WASPCA Adoption Center at 111 Featherbed Lane in Winchester, VA, on Thursday, November 30th, and adopt a shelter pet for just $30. All adoptable pets are neutered, vaccinated, microchipped, and ready to go home with a new family to love. Click the link to see who needs a new home: 24petconnect.com.